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you are in the cycle. president obama pulled the trig or tough new gun registration. is it on target or a misfire with the republican-led congress? >> i see another debt limit fiasco in our future. but we just had to put them in the guest spot. >> 179. 179. that's how many republicans voted against the sandy aid bill. 179! >> how many? we learn something new today about the white petitions. if you sign it, they will change the rules. >> all that and a cycle first. without a teleprompter. >> what!
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>> per a straight shooter. president obama made a decisive push for the most ambitious gun law overall this country has seen since the late 1960s. >> i will sit at that disk and sign a directive with law enforcement and schools and mental health professionals and the mental health community some of the tools they need to reduce gun violence. as they are important, they are in no way a substitute for the action of congress. it is time for a universal background check for anyone trying to buy a gun. congress should restore a gun on military-style weapons and a 10-round limit for magazines. we have long recognized that with rights come responsibilities. >> the president signed 23 executive orders and called on
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congress to act, acknowledging there is no law that can prevent every act of violence. the reactions that the president's proposals are rolling in. the speaker john boehner said they will review the republicans and warned good intentions do not necessarily make good laws. the senator said president obama is abusing his power with the executive orders and the senate will hold the first post new town committee in two weeks. we know how the nra feels before the president took the mike, the powerful gun lobby took a strike infuriating straightics with an ad that infolks his daughters. >> the president's kids more important than yours? why is he skeptical about armed security when his kids are protected by armed guards in their school. >> the white house called that ad repugnant and cowardly.
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we kick things off with peter alexander outside the white house. run down the major takeaways from the president in the executive orders he issued. >> you played the best highlights from today's event, but this was an emotional heart felt appeal from the president encouraging anybody paying attention across america to reach out directly to their congress people, saying congress must act on this issue. you ran through the items on the plate and 23 of these things are executive actions. they are getting rid of the loopholes to allow the guns to be performed. through private sales and tracking down on gun trafficking on these people who try to sell multiple weapons to potential felons. some of the other proposals you see now are the ones where the president will pursue by executive action by signing the
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details and prosecuting people who fail background checks and trafficking rings, ending the furthermore freeze on gun research and trying to spend more monomedia and video games as well as violence research. we talked about the atmosphere in that room. they signed the four young children and they wrote this letter. you see him on the screen. the young african-american boy who said i am writing to ask you to stop gun violence. i spoke to him afterwards and here's how he described the significance. >> i was thinking excitement that people were not going to be suffering anymore. you never know when somebody is getting ready to strike with a gun that could kill you and you don't want to lose your life over one little thing like a
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bullet. >> we heard from the president today and speak directly to the children at the podium today. he said this is our first task as a society, keeping our children safe. this is how we will be judged. steve? >> nbc's peter alexander. jumps into the cycle now, we have michael crowley, bureau chief. we talked about the executive orders there and there is real stuff there. the meat of all this is the legislation that obama is proposing and asking congress to act. you have republicans and a number of pro gun democrats including the senate majority leader harry reid who does not seem enthusiastic at the start of the debate right now. realistically, what do you think the most is that we can get out of this in terms of gun control laws? >> not that much.
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the orders are incremental and they will make some difference. they are not going to solve the problem as it is diagnosed. i don't see action in the congress. i wouldn't be surprised about a fig leaf measure and congress wants to show they did something that is toothless. i think that might be a realistic option. i don't think you will see very much in the way of the package the president proposed unless public opinion does seem to be moving a little bit. after the other big shootings, you don't see sentiment in favor of gun control. if the president wants to keep driving this and followed through more than i and other people predicted he would, keep the public pressure off now and mayor bloomberg is determined to do that. that's in the cover story.
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maybe then you get real pressure on the members and see action. right now for those hoping for big change, i am not seeing it. >> it is striking when you look at the timeline from new to this moment when obama stands up with the specific set of packages. a key player is joe bide tone come up with these recommendations. i wonder if you can talk about biden's role in the administration. what it says that he was tapped for the role about his status in administration. this was a moment when we say wow, this has been one of the more consequential vice presidents? >> biden has been influential in a way that was not appreciated. chuck hagel seems to be on his way to being secretary of defense. they are very close and i don't know that obama had a deep
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relationship with him, but there other ways in which his fingerprints are on the president's policies and afghanistan won the argument. two things here i would add on guns specifically. biden in a way is -- a messenger for obama and sectors that may not trust him. he's got working class roots from industrial pennsylvania. he's catholic. i guess that the white house sees him as a messenger to people who might be skeptical and have ideas of what obama's agenda is and that biden could be a better messenger on this. i hate to bring up the 2016 number, but i think you may see more opportunities for biden to step out and prove himself in his own standing if he wants to run for president. >> the one thing i would add is nobody understands personal
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tragedy and is able to speak to that in an emotional compelling way as joe biden. going back to what you were saying about very little hope of this package or really much of anything, passing it is republican house. what do you think the white house strategy is? this was not having crafted to the political realities. it was what they actually wanted. was the idea to use it to show this is not going to pass the republican house because they are extreme and unwilling to bend and use that as leverage down the line and painting the gop in my opinion, painting them as extreme and unwilling to pend. >> they are taking great pains to be realm and they are looking at all aspects of the issue and
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mental health and video games. i do think that you are seeing a president who in all regards has become increasingly defiant and combative and taking his case out to the country and i think it's part narrative that obama is trying to tell about. i don't want to overstate the popularity of what the white house is is doing. the numbers have moved in the way of the gun control adkro voicates, but i wonder when the president turns to other priorities, he will have to deal with and keep the pressure on is it going to be more difficult? >> i top the play sound for you and our viewers and we will talk about it in a second. >> we all go home and talk to your buddies and he wants to take my gun away.
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you heard it here. i'm on television. everybody knows it. i believe in the second amendment. i believe in people's lawful right to bear arms. i will not take your shotgun away. i will not take your rifle away. i won't take your hand gun away. >> that was in 2008 on a campaign stop. the new york legislation passed by governor cuomo bans most semi automatic guns and obama's proposal whether it passes or not calls for a ban on a broad array of guns. when lawmakers say they are not going to take our guns away, i don't think anyone is surprised that gun owners don't believe them. do you think this kind of, as you put it, aggressive approach, i think i agree that that's the strategy. ask for what we want and make the republicans look bad.
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will that backfire? a bunch of folks in the middle who aren't on either side of the gun control issue. they are sort of what i call the responsible middle. i wonder if this will have a backlash with them. >> the administration is worried about that. they know that the politics are perilous. harry reid is demonstrating that awareness and has a lot of voters in his home state. again, i think they are conscious about the way they go about this. i think they understand that there is this kind of stereo typical set piece in people's minds. obama wants to -- he secretly wants to ban guns and coming to take guns away. >> it's not a secret. he pro posed banning guns. >> there people who believe that obama would like to take gun away from everyone except police and security personnel. >> not just most. >> whatever he is doing now is
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say stocking horse for this grab that is waiting to come. that's another reason why biden is out in front. biden just has a little more credibility. they are worried about that and they will try not to seem like they are jaming it down anyone's throat. at the same time to get anything done, it will involve a fight with congress. so finding the needle here will be a tough political play. at the end of the day, i didn't think the president would follow-through as strongly as he has. he feels it in his gut. he said the worst day of his presidency was the day of the newtown shooting. he thought i can't not do anything. >> the new york law that strengthens gun laws. it doesn't take all the guns away. maryland is proposing gun laws and colorado is several statings, but it jumps out when you see 2016 hopefuls like cuomo
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and o'malley proposing gun laws. all 2016 hopefuls have to have. seeing that, the left is no longer afraid of the voter and going to the left saying let's make america a little safer. >> i think that liberals are fed up with this and i think the last year was a tipping point for a lot of people who didn't prioritize a lot. they feel strongly and they now demand a certain action. it's political courage that liberal democratic voters are looking to see and reminds me of issues back in the mid-00s. who will stand up to the iraq war? who has really got the courage to shatter the political taboos and go after guns? if we wanted to boil it down to pure politics in 2016 and i don't know that that's what's going on, but if we looked at it
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for the sake of argument, this is smart politics to appeal to the democratic base. you can worry about a campaign later. what's happening for 2016, i can't believe we are having this conversation already. there is an invisible primary to win over donors and activists and opinion leaders and the party. consistent with that, you can see a competition to be for who is toughest among guns and party leaders. >> a primary to set the agenda. that's the most significant thing to come out of this. thanks for joining us. up next, we will talk about the politics of guns. new york's tough new stance in sandy relief at last. all with a man who said it's time to get rid of the debt ceiling. new york congressman jerry nadler is in the guest spot as we roll on for wednesday, january 16th. look what mommy is having. mommy's having a french fry. yes she is, yes she is.
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>> we are back with jerry natler from new york, he's a democrat. let's start with the measures that the president proposed today to curb gun violence. what's your response to them? >> i'm glad he proposed them. they are sorely needed. the statistics, we know what happened at newtown high school and other places. we have 10,000 or 11 thousand people die of gunfire. in japan or germany it's 100 and canada is 50. it's for one reason and reason
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only. the easy availability of guns and assault rifles and large caliber magazines and so forth. that ought to be stopped. >> congressman, it is ambitious who president obama proposed. the question is how much can get through and be enacted. from a practical standpoint i wonder if it doesn't begin to go far enough. they talk about a gun buy back program where if you had an assault weapons ban, you would have million was weapons in circulation unless you can get those off the streets too. don't we need to do a lot more than even obama is doing? >> could we do more? yes. should we? yes. it's an ambitious program given this congress. >> the legislation that governor
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cuomo signed into law here in your state, our state, new york, addressed the mental health holes in the system that i am all for. i wonder if you can help me for professionals to report their patients as dangerous will be enforce and if making doctors responsible for gun safety is the smartest thing to do. >> i don't really know how that's going to be enforced. i am not familiar with the details and the state legisla legislatu legislature. on the national level that was being proposed is we eliminate the gun show loophole and we have say system for tracking and checking the backgrounds of people who want to buy guns in a store from someone else. that's obviously a tremendous effect in keeping the guns out of hands of felons, terrorists,
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and lunatics. >> let's turn to the debt ceiling, something that you and i both share a mutual disdain for. you proposed eliminating it and something i fully support since it serves no useful purpose. i wanted to ask you about the president's strategy. he came out and has basically eliminated the 14th amendment to the constitution option. he eliminated all of the ways of getting out of the debt ceiling without having congress make the decision themselves. do you think that's right to put the ball in the court of the republican house caucus and said you guys have the choice. are you going to raise it or cause a default and deal with those economic consequences? >> i don't know if it's the right strategy. i wish he had not ruled out the 14th amendment or the coin. he is betting that the
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republican party is not completely insane. i hope that's a good bet. i'm not sure it is. what the republicans are doing is saying that's a nice economy. like a 1930s gangster movie. that's a nice economy. pity if it blows up if you don't pay me off with what i want. that's a direct threat and the hostage is the entire economy. we will default and if we default, we will have a depression. a real depression and the interest rates will spike on every public and private loan. we will have a mass unemployment like now. now. i love the mafia analogies. keep it up. the sandy relief bill. this is not supposed to be politicized. 179 republicans in the house vote against it including people
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from louisiana, mississippi, alabama and gulf states y. did it become so politicize and have a hard time getting through? >> i don't know. maybe it's because it's the first time that we had disaster relief of a large amount since this congress got elected. certainly there was a list of something like 67 members and asked for and voted for and demanded the rein their states for natural disasters hit in the midwest and the gulf coast and so forth and refused to vote for it now. no rational answer to that. i like to believe it's not because they are prejudice against new york or the northeast. it's hard to reach such say conclusion. >> thank you so much for joining us. >> you're welcome. >> earlier in the show we showed you a portion of the controversial ad focusing on the president's daughters. it's also generating a ton of
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talk on the facebook page right now. tommy mars et said i hope the good members who are members of the lobby will not renew. nra equals nothing reasonable allowed. let us know what you are thinking. up next, sorry, texas. we are messing with texas. how about a few other eyebrow raisers sparked a change at the white house.
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the empire strikes back. that's the fake galactic empire in the fixzal universe of "star wars" which responded to the white house's rejection of the we the people petition. no go apparently.
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the imperial center said the obama administration's rejection of plans to build the space station only shows their overwhelming military superiority over our tiny planet. okay. probably going out on a right now by saying this, but this was probably why the white house announced they are raising the signatures leaded for an official response on the white page from 25,000 to 100,000. the whole project shook me as silly on both ends. when you reach the threshold, you get a response from the white house. they don't guarantee action on it. now it's 100,000. that confirms the stilliness of
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this project. actually take these seriously instead of using them as an excuse. that's a petition. it has 37,000 plus signatures. >> the people have spoken. >> they save the loopedy loo. that got 47 signatures. >> and the signatures. >> first of all, "star wars" is totally real. let's not be counter factual about that. >> okay. >> i agree that they are a waste of time and on the other end, but in terms of the data mining aspect, you can see what people want and care about enough to spend their time signing their name online and the slew of cessation petitions out of the south really interest me. this idea that there a lot of southern people who want to have nothing to do with obama's america. i don't want you can say there is any policy that has been enacted that changed america so
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much that has not been enacted yet and doesn't change america so much that you can no longer be part of the country. we don't want to be in a country run by a black man. it's not a leap to say a lot of people from the south, not everybody, but a lot of people are -- >> you are aligning a region of the country and injecting race into their psyches because they don't like the policies of the president. >> obama care say reason to leave america. i find is you sessionism offensive, but i think it's equally offensive to call these folks racist when you know nothing of their viewpoints and don't know anything about it. >> the other danger with this sort of thing seems to have replaced it to a fair degree in members of congress and a controversial bill would talk about. my phones are ringing 26-1 against this or 14-1 against it. i wondered how much that
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influenced their votes or how much it was trying to justify by saying everyone is against this. the country is so big, it is very easy. if the petition has proven anything, it is a big seeming number of people to get behind anything. that doesn't mean because 65,000 people signed the let's put the picture on it, i don't know. i'm trying to think of this. >> you get these what sounds like a lot of people and it doesn't represent a ground swell of support. >> with a lot of boards. >> it's the google auto complete. these are on people's minds and it's interesting. >> i think we should say or stipulate. stipify? what is that? this is much more for the white house than it is for us.
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as we pointed out, you get a response and they will probably not do anything about it. it gives a sense of what people care about and gives a chance to collect more e-mail addresses which i'm sure they will find beautiful. i was set to be sort of sarcastic about this and a wasteful pointless exercise. sorry, guys. i went on and actually it was interesting. the top three petitions were all about the bastist church and being designated as officially a hate organization. it was interesting to me that that was something that that people were talking about and cared about. that was relevant information and i would say in terms of just the signing petition form of activism, it has a small impact. if people are part of signing that petition and something does happen, it is a positively reinforcing cycle where they did
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something and caused change and gave them power. the feeling is addictive. i hope that the people are signing these petitions, this is the first step to getting more engaged. >> that are doesn't happen. >> it does, actually. let me give you an example. when sandra fluke was attacked by rush limbaugh. i launched a petition and 700,000 people from social media signed up, it didn't end there. there was a core group that from that initial activism set up a database to track and monitor what was going on with him. it's not true that that doesn't happen. he lost hundreds of advertisers because of the efforts. i have seen it happen and it does happen. >> coming up, what the hell is a presidency for? that's a quote. our next guest's words, not mine. lessons from past presidents as we ramp up for obama's second
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>> with respect to this truism about me not socializing enough and patting folks on the back and all that stuff, most people who know me know i'm a pretty friendly guy. i like a good party. and the truth is that when i was in the senate i had great relationships over there. >> that is the president responding directly to one of the criticisms levied against him that he doesn't have enough personal relationships with members of congress, specifically with republican members. he is not the commander in chief
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to deal with the congress and our next guest said it's one of the lessons that you can learn from a previous president, lyndon b. johnson. joining us is joe who served as a special assistant to lbj and a close adviser to president kennedy as well. he is the author of the awesomely titled what the approximately hell is a presidency for? >> making washington work, a new publication and he joins us now. i am endlessly fascinated with lbj and the life story and the 39s presidency. you can read these books and see the immediate change when jfk dies and lbj assumes the office, there is this bill install and he works his magic and the phones and gets his way on that and gets his way on the tax bill that kennedy couldn't get
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through. my question is when you look at the great skills and the talents that lbj had dealing with the senate and congress, do they really apply in the era of hyper polarization that we live in? the republican leader. does mitch mcconnell respond with the same? >> i think you have to remember that there was terrific polarization in the 1960s. the democratic party was in control of tourn democrats who were against the kifl rights bills and controlled the mitties. the house were mostly in control of people against the bills. they were also against most of the great society programs. he had to find republicans that would support him. what the hell is say presidency for is a quote of johnson when early 64 before his first state of the union after kennedy died,
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his entire staff said don't go for the civil rights bill. it's a presidential election year and hang on to the presidency and we will do it after that. he said what the hell is say presidency for? we are going for it. he went for it and got it. i think sure, there is a level of intransjens, but the republican party that johnson faced in some respects had a lost similarities. the week before barry gold water was nominated and was gold water, nixon or rockefeller to be the nominee, the polls show johnson getting 77% of the vote to gold water's 20%. the republican convention nominated gold water. you got to remember this ment mentality that we are dealing with. what obama is doing with respect to gun control is kind ofuing the presidency in a way that i find very attractive. whether it will be successful or
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not, i don't know. he can win in washington and he can win if he can rev up the people. >> the cover of your book there was a picture of you and lbj talking together. everybody talks about the famous lbj charm and the way he worked on people. when you are man on man with him, what was he like in his element trying to convince you? >> he had everything. he would have statistics and he would hover over you. he would lean into you and knew every member's price. he knew whether it was a dam you needed or you wanted a letter to your son or daughter. whether you wanted invitation to the white house dinner. he knew that and also he knew how to convince people, george mcgovern said this great power of conviction and persuasion was because everybody knew his gut was in it. he believed in the poverty
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program and the civil rights programs and he was going after them. >> and i feel like we spent a lot of time offering advice on leadership for the president. he seems to have his own flock at least behind him even though he has to deal with the republicans. what about john boehner? he seems to be struggling as speaker of the house grean having to pass a bill without a majority of his caucus. are there lessons that being apply to speaker of the house john boehner. >> i think obama probably would have no problem dealing with boehner. boehner has a terrible problem with his own people. the trick there is to try to figure out how you can provide to boehner some things that the carrots who are sticks can help him bring his troops aboard. that's the trick whether it's possible to do it or not, i
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don't know. again, if you look at the gun control thing, i don't think obama can win that in washington. i think he is realizing he may be able to win it out in the troops. getting people to change their mind. let me give you an example. the voting rights act. it was not a popular piece of legislation. there is a wonderful phone conversation that lbj calls martin luther king and he said martin, i want you to find the worst place you can in the south where negro is the term then. a negro has to recite the constitution and can't get the vote. you find that place and you bring all your leaders down there and get people down there and you get that on television and you get that broadcast and i will shove this bill through. when the average guy and selma was the place. because the average american who
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is riding a tractor or living in the suburbs or living in a northern state will say wait a minute, it's not fair. he said the issue is not whether you are black or white, the issue is that everybody is equal. and that was very important. i think what obama is saying now it's not democratic or republican, let's make the country safer. >> thanks so much for joining us. up next, does a gun change the way you think? we'll examine that as the cycle rolls on.
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for more information including cost support options, call 1-888-xarelto or visit >> do guns transform their owners. does having a gun change you? there millions of responsible gun owners in america. my father is one. absolute power does corrupt and in some people guns function like a shot of adrenaline. gunmakers wouldn't make ads like this making masculinity and the false sense of power some people get is portrayed in the next film, gun which is about a man who buys a gun after a break in and is changed by it.
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>> that's not the way he does it. spencer gillis's short film gun will have a world premier at the sundance film festival. welcome and congratulations on that. >> thank you. >> do you think possessing a gun changes people or certain people are drawn to guns and then a fraction of those are sort ever perverted by them? >> i think perverted is a strong word. >> thank you, spencer. i tried to tell him all the time. >> i think it depends on the person and how they react to roaning a gun. it's a matter of whether or not you understand the responsibility that comes with owning a gun. in the case of this film as you say in the clip, he obviously doesn't know what he is doing.
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>> here comes to know what he's doing and swaggers around and challenges kids who he wouldn't normally challenge and being rude to the neighbors. >>right. in his case he struggles with the sense of power that the gun gives him. and it's just -- it leads him down a road of these dark fantasies that he has. but i think when audiences see the film, they'll understand at the end of the film it kind of defies your expectations as to what you think is going to happen. there was actually a great column in the new yorker called the dark presence of guns. and it's uncanny that his narrative he describes parallels my film pretty closely. he talks about the first time he fired a handgun when he was a police officer in cape cod. he says, you know, you realize you turn to the guy next to you and you could end his life. and there's some sense of power there that comes with that.
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and he says it's not necessarily that he has a murderous impulse but more he understands the sense of authority the gun gives him. >> i have not seen your film. congrats on getting to sundance. that's a huge accomplishment. but what was the point here? was the point to try and kind of scare folks away from buying a gun for self-defense? one of our fundamental rights and responsible thing to do? >> not at all. the film's not meant to push an agenda. i think the strength of it is it leaves it open to your interpretation. and i think that's what i love most about the film. because everybody from every different side of this issue, they're going watch the film and they'll find the meaning themselves. and that engages the audience, i think, in a way that a lot of films don't. but, listen. i'm from kansas. i grew up in a small town. my mother was a police officer. i shot guns growing up. so this for me is a complicated
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issue. >> yeah. >> there's a lot of loud voices on both sides, but i think for most americans it's a complex issue. i'm a believer in the second amendment. but i recognize that there needs to be limits on that just like the first amendment, for instance. there's limits on that. i mean, you can't walk into a theater and scream fire. which that would endanger public safety. so i think that translates to the second amendment pretty well as well. >> very quickly. low on time here. but the timing on this is impeccable for you. this is the number one issue right now and your movie is coming out just as this is playing out. obviously you started before this. what led you to do this now? >> well, we shot the film a little over a year ago. and the ironic thing looking back it seems unbelievable, but these were not at all issues that i was thinking about when we made the film. i grew up around films. i talked about that. also i live in new jersey in the suburbs and one night i heard a
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noise outside. my pregnant wife was next to me and that primal instingts kicked in and i got up and looked out the window. it got me thinking. what would i do if somebody was breaking into my home? what self-defense mechanisms do i have? that's where the idea came from. a more personal story. >> interesting. good luck with the film and at sundance. spencer gillis, thank you. up next, steve goes rogue and does an improvised rant. about one of the best dads. and i wonder what homer simpson would do to get a gun? >> the law requires a five-day waiting period. we've got a run a background check. >> five days? but i'm mad now. i'd kill you if i had my gun. >> yeah, well, you don't. [old english accent] safe driver,
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♪ ♪ what might not be right for you ♪ ♪ might not be right for some ? >> he's a man of me. and i could go on and on. that is the theme song to "different strokes" starring conrad bain as phillip. in case you haven't heard today, he unfortunately passed away. his daughter came out with a statement earlier today. she said to a whole generation of people, he was like a father. and i have to say, i actually understand a little bit of what that means. i grew up in the 1980s. obviously i loved and still love my own father. but i was also mesmerized by
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television. and i can think back at the sitcoms i watched as a kid now and they can seem contrived and heavy handed. i can laugh at them from that perspective. but when you're an impressionable 7-year-old or 8-year-old, they seem real. and the fathers in them seem real. as funny as it seems to say, the tv fathers of my childhood had a real impact on me. had a real impact on sort of making me the person i am today. sometimes i could look at their trait and say i wanted to emulate them and other times i didn't want to emulate them. a lot of times i felt like that's somebody i wouldn't want to disappoint. down go the list. some of the tf fathers. start with bill cosby. the cosby show in the 1980s. when his kids would screw up, he had a way of explaining to them exactly why they'd kind of been dumb but did it in a funny way and got them to laugh at themselves. i never wanted to disappoint dr. huxtable. from
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